Spring travel in Canada: 5 of the best places to visit

The start of the spring season signifies the blossoming of flowers and warmer weather and time to venture outdoors and travel again. There’s a palpable shift in energy as the heavy winter jackets are packed away and the daylight hours are extended. The 21st of March signifies the official start of springtime in Canada but the reality might be slightly different. The arrival of spring may differ in certain parts of the country because Canada is so large.

Red tulips with green leaves and blue sky
Enjoy the vibrant colours of spring in Canada
© Esther Gorlee
A grizzly bear peaking out from some green vegetation
Spot grizzly bears that are coming out of hibernation
© Sheena Greenlaw

In general, spring in Canada is from March through to May but you may experience warmer weather in some parts of the country through to mid-June. The savvy traveller will tell you that spring is the best time to travel in Canada because it is considered the ‘shoulder season.’ This means that it is less crowded and more affordable because many accommodation properties offer shoulder season specials.

Spring travel in Canada is beautiful because everything comes alive. The landscape changes colour with flowers in bloom, maple syrup season kicks off with traditional spring festivities, and ice begins to melt creating thundering waterfalls.

Below you’ll find some inspiration for spring travel in Canada, especially the best places to visit and unique activities. If you need more information and insights, join one of our fun online presentations with a travel specialist.

Two moose in green vegetation
See moose and other wildlife as you journey through Canada
© Isi Parente
Green grapes on the vine
Spring is the start of wine tasting season in Okanagan Valley
© Jason Ng


With its mountain backdrop and urban beaches, Vancouver has earned the reputation of being one of the most beautiful cities in the world. And not more so than in spring when the streets are lined with over 40 000 colourful cherry trees in full bloom. The mild temperatures and extensive parks make it a paradise for outdoor activities.

Discover an oasis in the city

Stanley Park is 1 000 acres of lush rainforest near downtown Vancouver. If you enjoy nature, this is the best place to visit in Vancouver in spring. A paved seawall path surrounds the green space and is a stunning place to explore on a bike. With a private bike tour, you go at your own pace and you will see the impressive sights of the park as well as some hidden gems. Enjoy spectacular views of the coast and the breathtaking hues of the gardens and cherry blossom trees.

A pink cherry blossom tree in Vancouver
Get inspired by the beauty of the pink and white cherry blossom trees in Vancouver
An outdoor ceremony with Indigenous people
Learn about the history and culture of the Indigenous population
© Tourism Vancouver/Vision Event Photography Inc

Okanagan Valley

A wine tour in one of Canada's most famous wine regions is a must. In spring, the orchards and vineyards start bursting with life, and the flowers and trees start awakening to the new season. The days are longer and sunnier, and the tasting rooms are quieter. Spend more time savouring the local flavours, and be the first to try the new releases. Sit on a sun-kissed patio with a glass of crisp white wine and enjoy the stunning lake views.

Springtime in Canada is perfect for hiking. Head to the trails of Kettle Valley in Kelowna in early April to spot some wildlife and relish the amazing views of Okanagan Lake.

Red flowers with the Okanagan Valley in the background
Explore the Okanagan Valley with a wine tour, on a biking trail or hiking


Imagine walking along roads covered in white and pink petals in the picturesque capital city of British Columbia. This is spring in Victoria. A city exploding in colour and character with flowers in bloom around every corner. There isn’t a botanical garden in Canada that could compare to Butchart Gardens. Connect to nature and be enveloped by 55 acres of lush trees, shrubs, and flowers. Walk along a perfectly manicured path to the mysterious sunken garden or spend quiet time meditating in the Japanese Garden.

Victoria is not short of parks and gardens in which to spend a day exploring or even relaxing with a picnic basket. However, if spotting some wildlife is what you are after, from April, you could go on a whale-watching tour. See Orcas and humpback whales in their natural habitat, seals, otters, and a variety of birds.

Victoria Day is a major Canadian holiday in spring. It’s on the last Monday before 25 May and for most Canadians signals the first weekend to go camping. In some cities and towns, the holiday is celebrated with fireworks displays.

A pink flower on a brown branch
Stroll through the parks and marvel at the flowers in bloom

Vancouver Island

Venture out of Victoria and further into the quiet comfort of Vancouver Island. The ideal place to experience a spring break. With mild temperatures and fewer people, escape to the magical landscape of Canada’s west coast. The opportunities for unforgettable experiences are endless on Vancouver Island.

Go surfing or whale watching in Tofino, biking in Nanaimo or hiking in old-growth rainforests. Snuggle up with a cup of coffee in a quaint cafe or brave the misty waters in a canoe. Visit the unspoilt beaches on the coast or chase the cascading waterfalls. Spring is a great time to dust off winter and awaken your curiosity and sense of discovery deep in the wilderness of Vancouver Island.

Two deers near a tree with a cabin and lake in the background
Stay in secluded retreats and spot deer on your doorstep
An untouched coastline of rock and forest
Discover a wild and magnetic landscape on Vancouver Island

The Canadian Rockies

The Canadian Rockies are beautiful all year round. What makes it so unique in spring is that there are fewer crowds. You feel like you have the national parks all to yourself. Enjoy the luxury of taking your time. There’s no rush for parking, for the best views or the best camera shot. Appreciate the quiet and the calm of nature displayed before you. The mountains, lakes and trees portray their own sense of mystery in spring which you can relish in solitude.

Bears come out of hibernation in spring. You are more than likely going to spot bears, caribou, coyotes and elk while out hiking and travelling through the Rockies. And while there might still be snow on trails and roads, the experience of seeing the landscape change with the season is breathtaking.

It’s important to note that the lakes in the Rockies are frozen until late May. If you looking to specifically see Lake Louise or Lake Moraine, it may be better to plan for June. And while it is spring, it is best to dress in layers because the weather may still be cool. And of course, skiing is still possible in the Rockies in May. You could get some amazing deals to get on the slopes at Lake Louise.

A clear lake surrounded by green forest and snow-capped mountains in Canada
Take your time to enjoy the magnificent views
A highway passing a blue lake, green forest and snow-capped mountain ranges
Do a road trip through Canada at your own pace
© Lacey Gilmour

Spring festivals

Canada has many traditions and festivals in spring that keep people connected, especially after a long, cold winter. There are several maple syrup festivals all over Canada but the most popular ones are in Ontario. The Canadian Tulip Festival is in Ottawa in May and celebrates the gifts of tulips from the Netherlands. The Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival is a whole month-long festival with exciting activities that honour the gift of cherry blossoms from Japan.

Pink flowers in bloom in spring in Ottawa
Join any of the spring festivities in Canada and have a great time

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